beIN Sport reaches 1 million subscribers

Pascale Paoli-Lebailly | 08-11-2012

Nasser Al-Khelaifi, president of beIN Sport, has announced that Al-Jazeera’s pay-tv sport channels in France reached over 1 million subscribers just five months after kicking off.

Launched at the beginning of June, beIN Sport 1 has quickly been followed by beIN Sport 2 on 27 July, and then by beIN Sport Max, "with the aim of offering an image of sport in its diversity ".

The Euro 2012 and Olympic Games events featured as the first steps of the channel, which has replaced Orange TV subs sport channel Orange Sport. Ligue 1, Ligue 2, the Spanish League, the Champions League, the Europa League are among the other events which make the channel’s football programming exceptionnally diversified.

Other sports have also found their place on the channel with the Handball Champions League, the French Women’s Handball Championship, Rugby League, Rugby Union, volleyball, cycling, athletics, boxing and horse shows.

beIN Sport has also recently signed TV rights deals to US sports, with the NFL and the NBA. Owned by Canal+ for the past 28 years, NBA’s TV rights were acquired for four years on 1 November. beIN Sport will air six live matches a week plus six recorded games, totalling 200 per year.

Owing to the amount spent over these rights, which were not disclosed by the group but are estimated to be around €300-330 million, beIN Sport channels will not break even for four to five years.